A pothole repair project is underway along Highway 101 between Santa Maria and Nipomo as a break in the rain means it’s “go time” for Caltrans.
Work began Thursday, closing one northbound lane of the highway. The work will continue along the northbound side of the highway Friday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Delays are expected.
“We're going to be making pothole repairs on a roughly 5,000-foot stretch of road and we estimate to fill in roughly 250 potholes over the next two days. We expect to use roughly 250 tons of asphalt mix and we will be repairing potholes from Highway 166 to Tefft Street in Nipomo," said Alexa Bertola, Caltrans District 5 public information officer.
While Caltrans said it’s difficult to say whether the potholes are a direct result of the heavy rainfall, drivers say, following the storms, they’ve seen more potholes pop up.
“Yes, definitely in the past few months. Yeah, a lot of them popped up, you know, cracks, then eventually turn into potholes," said Santa Maria resident, Richard Gonzalez.
“We determine which potholes need to be repaired first by looking at the depth as well as how bad the pothole is," added Bertola.
Gonzalez is one of many drivers who travel along Highway 101 and says he’s glad something is being done about them.
Pothole repairs typically last a few years but it all depends on the weather, how many cars use the roadway and the weight of the vehicles.
Drivers heading northbound on Highway 101 Friday in the impacted area should expect at least a 30-minute travel delay with only the left lane open on the northbound side.